Industry experts say prices of imported goods may go up, govt dismisses claims saying there is no increase in tax percentage.

The Arvind Kejriwal government is likely to table a new Value Added Tax (Third) Amendment Bill, 2015, in the assembly this session to enable collection of tax in advance on goods imported from outside India. According to a provision in the bill, the government can collect a certain percentage of the value added tax on imported goods at the time of customs clearance, while the rest of the tax can be collected later after further calculation, sources said. The tax will also have to be paid in advance on goods not meant for sale or consumption in Delhi, which will be later adjusted or refunded by the government.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Industry sources claimed that prices of imported goods will go up, since dealers have to pay a lump sum amount of money on goods even before they are sold. Delhi government officials, however, dismissed the claim saying the bill doesn’t propose an increase in taxes and that dealers will pay the same amount of taxes, just in different phases. At present, goods worth Rs 10,000 crore are imported every month through the three land ports and the international airport of Delhi. A major quantity of liquor, chocolates and perfumes, among other items of regular use are imported by the country.The bill has a provision to impose strict punishment on tax evaders, with an imprisonment of a year if the tax evasion amount is more than Rs 1 crore, and a fine of minimum Rs 50,000, which can also go up four times the evaded tax amount. The bill was cleared by the Delhi cabinet on Wednesday and is likely to be tabled in the assembly on Thursday. The winter session of the Delhi assembly is set to go on till Friday.The bill proposes to set up special courts and special public prosecutors for tax evasion cases. It also proposes a provision where officials of trade and taxes department can carry out investigations on tax evasion cases and also prosecute offenders before the metropolitan magistrate court without referring complaints to the police. “The bill, once cleared by the assembly, will solve two purposes. Firstly, Delhi government will have an authentic information of the exact number of companies in Delhi which import goods and what goods they import,” said a government official, adding that it will empower the government officials who will not have to depend on the Delhi police to investigate and prosecute a tax evader.The bill will also enable the government to ensure dealers install a point-of-sale device to keep a tab on tax evaders.

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AAP’s VAT amendment bill proposes paying in advance for imported goods, heavy penalty for tax evaders